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Author Topic:   Points for a creator (Alaninnont and Subbie only)
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Posts: 107
Joined: 02-27-2009

Message 1 of 65 (501037)
03-03-2009 8:14 PM

I guarantee that every atheist here would be absolutely delighted if you were to present evidence contrary to their beliefs. Please, feel free to begin a thread dedicated to evidence against an atheist or evolutionist point of view. I count myself in both camps, and assure you that I will examine any such evidence that you provide and block nothing out.
I love guarantees. Background: I've been harbouring conflicting ideas about origins in my mind for many years. A couple of months ago I decided I would try to come to some kind of conclusion to ease the arguing factions in my mind. After a couple of months of surfing, thinking, and reading I believe it is more probable that a creator was involved in the making of the universe and possibly in the evolutionary process. My methodical (some would say anal) mind has not yet dealt with the question of what kind of creator but I'm hoping to find more input in these forums.
First my apologies for: being long winded, repeating things that have been hashed over in these forums, missing obvious points (I've only been at this a couple of months). Here are the points that I've found for the existence of some kind of creator.
1. The universe couldn't have existed always otherwise all heat and energy would be spread evenly throughout the universe (second law of thermodynamics) and so it was created. That implies that something created it.
2. The conditions needed for life are very specific. It seems extremely improbable that they came about by chance. You can only call on the anthropic principle (it must have happened that way or we wouldn't be here to talk about it) so many times before you say the improbabilities are just too great. Setting up the conditions seem to indicate that something/someone was setting them up.
a) Immediately after the big bang all matter in the universe expanded faster than the speed of light. If it hadn't done so, the conditions for life wouldn't have happened.
b) Then matter expanded at exactly the right speed to form stars and planets. Stephen Hawkins says that if they expanded one part in a thousand million millions slower, matter would have collapsed back on itself. Any faster and stars wouldn't have formed.
c) The stars and the planet earth.
d) After the earth cooled, there was no water. We needed water for life. 326 000 000 000 000 000 000 gallons (that's 16 500 tons of water every minute for 150 million years) appeared on earth with no good explanations for the amount.
e) There are right handed and left handed amino acids. If both existed on earth then life could not have happened. Somehow all the right handed amino acids were eliminated.
f) The development of the atmosphere for life and a stable world with small temperature changes (no other planets discovered so far could support our kind of life).
3. There is no plausible model for the first cell. There is no good explanation for where all the molecules came from and no good explanation for how they came together in close proximity.
4. Even if all the ingredients for a cell are brought together in plentiful supply in a test tube, life does not occur. Something needs to "breathe" life into it.
5. Very specific proteins with very specific tasks (eg. DNA polymerase) are needed for life. The probability of about 1 000 amino acids arranging themselves in the right order is infinitesimally small. There are many more specific enzymes that are needed for life to occur.
6. Life needed a DNA or RNA strand of about 30 000 base pairs to begin. The probability of about 30 000 nucleic acids arranging themselves in the right order is almost too small to be worth considering possible.
7. The second law of thermodynamics states that in any system, open or closed, all things tend toward entropy. For chance evolution to occur, the opposite would have had to happen millions of times over.
8. The fossil record shows sudden jumps in complexity. The first animal was the comb jelly (Nature; April 10, 2008) which has connective tissue and a nervous system. During the Cambrian Explosion, plants and animals suddenly (in the geological sense) went from very simple to very complex. It is easier to believe that something was involved in the process rather than evolution took jumps.
9. Natural selection selects out or for certain traits. It does not increase the complexity of the organism.
10. There have been no beneficial mutations documented that increase the complexity of the organism.
11. In every culture there is a belief in spiritual beings.
12. Complex organs like the eye could not have evolved since there are many steps that give no benefit to the organism and there is no reason to continue along a path to build them.
13. There are DNA segments that exists in different species that did not exist in their common ancestor.
14. In cases of people who have been resuscitated, they experience very similar things including meeting some "being of light." (See work by Dr. Raymond Moody)
15. Any time we see complexity, we immediately assume that an intelligent being organized it. Why would we assume different for the universe?
16. Nobody has observed evolution occuring. Even those there are more humanoid beings living right now than for the last six million years and far more mutanogens. Lots of evolutionary steps happened then. Why are not more happening now? We see the extinction of many species but no new species appearing. Evidence shows fewer species developing.
17. Many cellular systems seem to be front loaded. They seem to contain systems needed for higher level organisms. It seems like someone was setting up evolution from the start. (See posts in early Feb. in http://designmatrix.wordpress.com/)
18. There are many fossil records from early animals but the fossil records of any transitory species is weak at best.
Edited by Adminnemooseus, : Added a lot of blank lines.
Edited by Adminnemooseus, : Modify topic title with "(Alaninnont and Subbie only)" part.
Edited by Adminnemooseus, : Add "Great Debate" banners.

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Message 6 of 65 (501177)
03-04-2009 9:17 PM
Reply to: Message 5 by subbie
03-04-2009 10:25 AM

Sounds great. You're right that a lot is apologetics. Would it be easier if we hit one point at a time? I'm in a really busy time right now so I might not be too quick in replying either. Maybe the beginning is a good spot. Again, I apologize if these issues have been hashed over ad naseum but, as I said, I'm new to the forum and new to the issue.
1. The beginning.
As I see it, there are two possibilities for the beginning of the universe. It was either created or it existed forever. If it existed forever, then heat should be evenly dipersed throughout the universe therefore it is likely that it was created. Whether the universe expands forever, reaches a stasis, or falls back onto itself for the "big crunch", the stars would eventually burn out and heat would disipate. Since this is not the case, it then follows that the universe was likely created. Was there a creator or did it happen on its own? It doesn't make sense from a science point of view that the energy could have come from nothing (First law of thermodynamics) and it doesn't make sense from a science point of view that a being could have existed forever. Logically, I see a little more weight in a creator since it at least gives a explanation for the universe's existence. There are other options that are on the fringe but if we are looking for answers, no option should be left unconsidered. It is possible that the creator is an alien and that this is some kind of virtual reality. One hundred years ago, there was about 350 km of paved roads in North America, indoor plumbing was a luxury available to a small minority of the population, cars and planes were rudimentary, 95 % of doctors had no college education and the population of Los Vegas was 30. If technology has advanced this far in 100 years, what will it be like in another 100 or 1000 or 10 000 years. There are places in our universe which are much older than we are and so the existence of technology that could give us the perception of reality may be possible. I'm not saying this is probable, just possible.
What do you think?

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Message 8 of 65 (501321)
03-05-2009 4:27 PM

I haven't visited creationists websites unless you group ID in with creationists. Either way, I don't see why the source should affect the validity of a point. I appreciate your sensitivity toward faith but I'd really like to figure this thing out and come to some kind of conclusion in my mind so don't worry about destroying my faith. I've come to the conclusion that many people really don't know what they believe. They accept what they were fed in schools or at home or at church and haven't tore their thought processes down to see if their mind is really accepting it. I spent three years in Haiti where the vast majority of people are Voodoo followers. It vastly changed my ideas. I'm rambling.
There's a third option. It came into existence without a creator.
Please explain how this is possible. I can't see how it could have.
For some people, such as yourself, this is a more satisfying conclusion than accepting that we don't know the answers yet. For others, such as myself, that is no answer at all, because it simply pushes things back a step. You're unwilling to accept the idea of an infinite universe because it contradicts your understanding of the laws of thermodynamics, but you're willing to accept the idea of an infinite creator that violates those same laws. Well, that's okay with me, but it doesn't even approach the level of evidence of the existence of a creator.
I haven't come to any solid conclusions yet. From what I've considered so far, I feel it is more likely that some kind of creator was involved in the process. I haven't considered whether he/she/it was infinite or how involved he/she/it was. I'm not trying to bring forth arguments in the sense that I'm trying to convince you that I'm right and you should accept my opinion. My point in the first post was that it seems more logical to me that a creator was involved in the initial creation. You're right that nobody knows and science cannot reproduce those initial moments and so hard evidence for either side is difficult. All I can do is look at the evidence at hand, theorize possibilities and then side on the most probable answer. In science it seems like the only certainty is a reasonable probability.

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Message 11 of 65 (501589)
03-06-2009 8:50 PM

Here's the wikipedia definition of creationism;
Creationism is the religious belief that humanity, life, the Earth, and the universe were created in their original form by a deity (often the Abrahamic God of Judaism, Christianity and Islam) or deities.[1] In relation to the creation-evolution controversy the term creationism is commonly used to refer to religiously motivated rejection of evolution as an explanation of origins.
From what I have gathered, IDers form into three major groups.
1) Those that believe that a creator was involved in the original creation of the universe and the beginning of the first cell and then let evolution and the universe take its own course.
2) Those that believe that a creator was involved in the original creation, the first cell, and then tweaked evolution as it was going along to head us toward where we are today but is not actively involved in our lives.
3) Creationists who shy away from their fundamentalist and young earth friends.
{ABE} I'd also suggest, if you're interested in learning, that you ask questions on this forum. There are a number of people quite learned in many different disciplines who could explain a great deal. However, the best way to learn is to ask questions seeking information, not to jump in and make assertions about topics about which you really have no knowledge. There's nothing wrong with saying something like, "I've heard that the Second Law of Thermodynamics says evolution can't happen. Is that accurate?" However, to make the assertion then argue against people who actually know what the Second Law says and means is a really poor method of learning. It certainly gives the impression that your purpose here has nothing to do with learning, but more with proselytizing.
That was my original intent but I got shuffled into this forum. If you prefer, we could postpone while I do some digging around. You'll have to take my word for it that I'm not here to convert you. Try to take this with a stiff upper lip but my scheme is to use and abuse you, bounce ideas off of you, sqeeze some new ones out and then discard you like an old toy when we're done. Sorry but I thought you should know at the start. (tic)
Well, if we're talking specifically about the origin of the universe, neither you nor I are in a position to evaluate the evidence or the theories that scientists have developed to explain the evidence. The science and math behind cosmology is so advanced that only a fraction of a percent of people can even begin to fully comprehend all the positions.
You are right and I'm starting to think that at the end of this all, I won't come to any solid conclusions. The scary part about the amount of information available to us is that we have to take the vast majority of it on faith. Any field we dip into that is not our own, we have to assume many things. I'm starting to think that my best hope at the end of this is a rough estimate of the probabilities.
Despite what you may believe or have heard elsewhere, scientists have one agenda, accuracy.
I don't think I'm going to agree with you on this one. My time in research demonstarted to me that there are many who incorporate fudge factors and even questionable experimental methods to continue their publication parade. My time on a university biology board was a shock. There are many agendas and some shockingly trivial among scientists.
I'd like to know what you think about the virtual reality option. It seems to me that it is the least probable but it does have some virtues. One of the things that I've been wondering about is the silence in the rest of the universe. There are many solar systems and galaxies that are far older than ours. Theoretically, if our technology is advancing this fast at this stage in our development, it is probable that they are in other planets with life as well. It seems that space travel is concievably possible in our future and therefore should be possible if there is other life out there. Even if you don't believe in a creator, if life came into existence from inorganic substances here, it should stand the same chance of coming into existence on other planets. So why hasn't anyone contacted us. I know there are some that say they have but I haven't seen any credible evidence. With SETI and others with their ears on their satellite dishes, there should have been something. I see the options as these;
1) We are all there is.
2) There are aliens but the physical characteristics of the universe will somehow not allow the kind of space travel that can tranverse the incredible distances.
3) There are aliens but our world is off limits for now. (maybe I've been watching too much Picard)
4) There are aliens but they are in a different dimension or are so vastly different than us that we cannot interact.
5) We are in a world or virtual reality set up by the aliens.
What do you think?

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Message 13 of 65 (501639)
03-07-2009 7:59 AM

I'd like to continue here if you don't mind. I am very much enjoying this although my significant other gives me message-laden looks occasionally when I sit here too long. The open forums are less focused.
My impression, and it's only an impression, is that the large majority of IDers accept evolution but believe that there was a creator of some sort involved at some time. (not necessarily during the evolutionary procecss)
There's no evidence suggesting that we are in a virtual reality, so entertaining the option violates the rule of parsimony. In essence, that means don't add additional assumptions to any theory unless it's necessary to account for the evidence, and the fewer assumptions needed for any theory, the better.
Let me try and pin you down one more time. I'm not trying to argue one side or the other on this. I don't think this alien idea lends credibility to either side although I might have to think about that some more. Which of the five choices I listed do you think is the most probable and why? Are there any I missed? In the current model of the big bang timeline, there was a very brief period called the inflationary epoch during which matter expanded faster than the speed of light. It follows then that this is a possiblity and there may be some parts of our electronic transmissions that are moving faster than light. Given our current technological advancements, does it not seem logical that we would be able to detect and visit other life forms within a few thousand years? Where are the aliens?

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Message 15 of 65 (501861)
03-08-2009 8:59 AM

But first, let me tell you as to what would happen if at some instant, the universe did expand faster than the speed of light. In this case, as you have pointed out, the horizon distance will be the point at which the expansion was just at the speed of light; what you have called as the "end of our horizon".
So, if the universe never expanded faster than the speed of light, then we could see to the Big Bang, where it not for the CMB which blocks off light before that epoch. But, if at some point it DID expand faster than the speed of light, we will see to the "end of our horizon".
This is from Curious about Astronomy" but I've seen several references to it.
The possibility that you missed is that they are out there but we just haven't met yet.
D'oh!! Of course. That's why you're here, to keep me on track.
I've been thinking further down the "alien" path. A possiblility is that an alien or alien race is the creator. I could be that, for entertainment, curiousity, competition or reasons incomprehensible aliens took the planet and seeded it with the necessities for life and possibly experimented along the way. It would answer a number of questions like; where did all of the stuffs neccesary for life come from, how this world seems so perfectly prepared for life, how the improbability of random chance came up with the world we have. I'm not saying it's probable but I'm trying to explore all the possiblilities. It's the same thing we do with bacteria. We provide all the neccesities of life in nutrient agar and plate them onto a petri dish to let them grow and so we can find out things about them. The earth has some similarities to the petri dish. The growth curves are virtually identical. We have all the things we need to live here on this planet. The bacteria die, not becausse they run out of resources but because they are poisoned by their own wastes which seems to be where we are headed. (Go Green) Maybe we are some aliens petri dish.
So, what have we got so far? There are a number of options for how the universe initially came into existence. Science doesn't really help us because the event is not reproducible or testable. Logic tells us that some of the possibilities are more probable than others and that one of them could be (there may be others we haven't thought of yet) the truth. You think the Big Loop theory is the most logical way to explain the observable data and I think the existence of a creator is most logical way to explain the observable data. All options come back to the conumdrun of what started it off? How could something be made of nothing or how could something have existed forever.
I'd like to move on to my second point unless there are other things you want to bring up here.

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Message 17 of 65 (502102)
03-09-2009 4:21 PM

I'm not sure what you mean by "not neccessarily during the evolutionary process.
There are some that believe that a creator was responsible for the creation of the universe, set up the world to be able to sustain life, created the first cell, and then left evolution to take its own course. There is some feeling amongst those that the first cell was created with a number of front loaded mechanisms to give the first cell its best chance to evolve successfully.

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Message 18 of 65 (502827)
03-13-2009 2:40 PM

I was thinking about the option that aliens exist but they haven't been able to find us yet. Following this train, it is unlikely that we will be able to ever contact aliens. If there are civilizations that are thousands of years older than us and they are unable to create the technology to find us, it stands to reason that with thousands of years of advancement, we won't be able to detect them. Kind of sad and lonely. Perhaps it's the dimensions. If you are a proponent of the superstring theory, there should be ten or eleven dimensions. Maybe our section of the universe is the backwater where only four dimensions exist and we can't detect the broader universe and they can't detect us. Just musing.
Anyway, on to the second point.
To me, it looks like the world is a setup. We need very specific and limited conditions for life to exist. It makes more sense to me that something set it up than it happened by chance. First of all, in the beginning the universe expanded at precisely the right rate. Any slower and it would have collapsed back onto itself. Any faster and stars and galaxies wouldn't have formed. Stephen Hawking in "A Brief History of Time" says that if it had been a thousand million, million parts slower, the conditions for life would not have existed. I can see the elements, stars, and planets forming following only the physical laws of the universe.
Then you have the earth setup. We need water. Early earth was cooling down and there was no atmosphere or water. It was too close to the sun and probably too hot for water to condense. The prominent theory is that comets hit the earth during a period of about 150 million years and with no atmosphere to burn them up, delivered water to earth. Considering that there is about 326 000 000 000 000 000 000 gallons of water on earth, that would mean that comets brought 16 500 tons of water every minute for 150 million years. There may have been some water contributed by the outgassing of volcanoes but separately or combined, it is hard to concieve of this much delivery. And that doesn't include the amount of water we have lost every year to space.
Theoretically there should be an equal amount of right-handed and left-handed amino acids on earth. If there were, life could not exist. The current theory is that amino acids were seeded on earth by comets (again) and polarized light from neutron stars eliminated the virtually all of the right-handed amino acids. I see some problems with this explanation also.
For life to begin you would need complex nucleic acids together with their sugars and phosphates, amino acids for the enzymes, ATP or some equivalent energy producing molecule, fatty acids or something to make a semi-permeable cell membrane, and all in very dense proportions that would allow for close interactions. Seeded to earth?
The atmosphere is an incredible piece of technology (yeah, I know I'm taking license) providing us with protection from cold, radiation, heat, etc. There is the anthropic priciple but the probability of the conditions for life here happening by chance seem astronomically small which means quadrillions of loops statistically would have occured before we got to this one. It seems more logical to me that a creator set it up.

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Message 20 of 65 (503437)
03-18-2009 10:46 PM
Reply to: Message 19 by subbie
03-16-2009 3:40 PM

Well, "a thousand million, million parts slower" hardly seems like "[a]ny slower" to me. But beyond that, can you cite me to an online, non-creationist source for the Hawking quote? It smells fishy.
It's in his book, "A Brief History of Time" on page 121. (I had to skim through half the book to find it. I have an amazing memory for some things but page numbers, not so much.) I don't know if you can get a source on line. Here it is from the book.
"Why did the universe start out with so nearly the critical rate of expansion that separates models that recollapse from those that go on expanding forever, so that even now, ten thousand million years later, it is still expanding at nearly the critical rate? If the rate of expansion one second after the big bang had been smaller by even one part in a hundred thousand million million, the universe would have recollapsed before it ever reached its present size."
As for where a point came from, I believe a point should stand or fall on its own merit. The source, the number or people who believe it or the credentials of the submitter do not determine if a point is valid or not.
Wikipedia. And speaking of water, isn't it weird how its unusual characteristics allow life. Frozen water is 9% lighter allowing it to float and sustain life in water. Its polarity. These special properties are needed for life. Why haven't we found water in any amounts on any other planets?
I have no idea what you mean by "quadrillions of loops," so I can't begin to guess what point you're making.
My point is that it is highly improbable that all the conditions for life just happened to come together. It is more logical that something or someone set it up.
More situational stuff. "If protons were 0.2 % heavier, they could decay into neutrons, destabilizing atoms. If the electromagnetic force were 4 % weaker, hydrogen would not exist; if it were much stronger, supernovae would fail to seed interstellar space with heavy elements. If the cosmological constant were much larger, the universe would have blown itself apart before galaxies could form."
Max Tegmark - Scientific American, May 2003

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Message 24 of 65 (503534)
03-19-2009 10:06 PM

Hardly a compelling argument that there must be a creator.
I'm not sure I'm getting this point across but I'm not trying to "argue" anything. I'm exploring this issue and am telling you why I currently am holding that idea that the existence of a creator is more probable than not. I am a firm believer in the disconfirmation bias.
I see it like a court room and I am the jury. I am trying to evaluate all the evidence to be able to say which is more likely, creator or no creator. Some of the evidence is weak, some is strong, some is scientific, some is circumstantial, but I want to hear it all. I realize that we are not in the area of hard evidence but evaluating the setup, it seems more logical that something or someone set it up rather than it happened by chance. Chance would mean that there are a long list of coincindences that happened to fall into place and that seems highly improbable to me. If I see an aquarium with specific conditions for some tropical fish, my first assumption is that someone set it up for them.

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Message 25 of 65 (503537)
03-19-2009 10:25 PM
Reply to: Message 21 by subbie
03-19-2009 6:26 PM

The problem with this is that creationist sources lie about quotes. That's why I'm always going to ask for a non-creationist source for any quote.
So what you're saying is that any quotation (the word "quote" is a verb. You're using it incorrectly) from any creationist site will always be a lie and any quotation from a non-creationist site will always be the truth? I'd like to see evidence for this theory.

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Message 28 of 65 (503758)
03-21-2009 9:14 PM

The Hawking quote you supplied does not support what you said. Hawking says nothing about conditions for life, at least not in the quote that you supplied. I haven't read his book, so I can't guess what else might be in it.
Yes it does. The universe had to expand at a very specific rate for the condions of life to exist. Any slower and matter would have collapsed back onto itself. Any faster and stars and planets would not have formed.

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Message 32 of 65 (504141)
03-24-2009 8:01 PM

From dictionary.com: quote: noun, a quotation.
From merriam-webster.com: quote: noun, quotation.
If you wanna get pedantic on my ass, you better check a source first, mate.
I checked both of your sources and they said exactly what I told you. You are using it incorrectly. You can quote somebody or quote a price (verb) but the statement itself is a quotation.
I'm saying that creationist sources lie. Not always, and not exclusively. But they lie with a high enough frequency so as to rend anything they say suspect. Note carefully, I did not say automatically wrong, I said suspect. That's why I look for another, non-creationist source.
As a lawyer you would know that if you make an accusation, it must be substantiated with evidence to be credible so please clarify and back up your accusation. Do all creationist site lie? Do they lie all the time? What percentage of the time do they lie? Do non-creationist sites always tell the truth? If not, what is the ratio of truth to lies?
Perhaps this would work better if we changed things up. Why don't you tell me why you think that there is no creator?

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Message 34 of 65 (504257)
03-25-2009 8:21 PM

An honest person would admit his mistake.
I would be happy to if I thought I made one. I repeat. You used the word "quote" incorrectly in your statement.
Obviously, this is getting us rather far afield from the topic, so let's do this. You pick any creationist site you like, or as many as you like, and start a new thread with the links. I guarantee that just about any scientifically minded person here will be able to find multiple lies on that site.
I am not very computer savy and am not sure how to create a new thread with links. I have not been going on creationist sites much but the one that I do go to once in a while is http://designmatrix.wordpress.com/
Please bring my attention to any lies on this site. There are sections with scientific jargon but my post graduate studies were in microbiology so I think that's why I like his posts. His writing is about the level of Dawkins if you have read any of his stuff.
You might cite to the fact that most people around the world believe in one god or another as a reason to believe in the existence of god. I would reply that if they all believed in an actual being, I would expect that they would all, or mostly, believe in the same one.
As I said before, the validity of a point should not be determined by who or how many people believe it. My belief that the existence of a creator is more probable than not is provisional as all scientific theories are and based on the information and evidence that I have seen.
I also agree that we have been getting off topic and I have found these last few exchanges unproductive in my search for new ideas. You seem to be interested in world religions. Would you be interested in changing the discussion to one in this field? I would still like to hear your reasons for coming to the conclusion that there is no creator if you'd be willing to discuss that.

Replies to this message:
 Message 35 by subbie, posted 03-27-2009 12:43 AM alaninnont has replied

Member (Idle past 4922 days)
Posts: 107
Joined: 02-27-2009

Message 36 of 65 (504359)
03-27-2009 5:12 PM
Reply to: Message 35 by subbie
03-27-2009 12:43 AM

I think I've provided my reasons at least twice in this thread. I'm not sure I can say it more plainly than I have.
The only reason that I remember is that you see no evidence for one. Is that all? Do you see evidence that one doesn't exist? Are you saying that creationists must come up with all the evidence for their position and make sure it is so convincing that there is absolutly no doubt but you do not have to supply any evidence for your beliefs?
Try to approach it this way. Explain to me why you don't believe in Zeus. He's the god responsible for thunder and lightning, among other things.
Who said I didn't believe in him? I think there is some evidence for the possibility of multiple creators. I'm not saying that I do but I'm trying to keep an open mind and investigate all the possibilities.
How are you coming with the lie analysis of the design matrix?
Re:quote - I see my friend the English teacher on Monday nights. I am going to ask his read on the use of the word.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 35 by subbie, posted 03-27-2009 12:43 AM subbie has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 37 by subbie, posted 03-27-2009 5:26 PM alaninnont has replied

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